Fumio Kishida, the prime minister of Japan, will unexpectedly travel to Kyiv to meet with Volodymyr Zelenskyy, the president of Ukraine, the foreign ministry of Japan announced on Tuesday.
According to the ministry, Kishida will provide “solidarity and unflinching support” to Ukraine during his visit.
After his visit to India, the Japanese prime minister was supposed to return to Tokyo, but he instead chose to travel to Ukraine. NHK broadcaster shows him getting on a train at Przemysl, a town near the Polish border.
Kishida’s visit, according to a statement from the Japanese Foreign Ministry, is to express “his respect for the courage and tenacity of the Ukrainian people standing up to defend their motherland.”
In addition to supporting Kyiv, Japan has joined its partners in the West in sanctioning Russia for its invasion of Ukraine.
The country has taken the rare action of supplying defenses and providing shelter to individuals escaping the fighting.
Japan, however, has not offered military assistance because the country’s post-war constitution restricts its military might to defensive measures.